by: Editor on 2/22/2017
Go where the trail leads! In gorgeous Sedona, the Verde Valley Wine Trail is nearby and attracts wine lovers from around the world. Enjoy local Arizona wines surrounded by the red rock scenery with seven wineries and eight tasting rooms at the ready. Each winery is one of a kind and offers unique wines at every stop. Near Jerome, Clarkdale, Cottonwood, Cornville and of course Sedona, it’s a fun way to see more of the local region.
Cottonwood is the hub of the Wine Trail, nestled above the desert heat yet away from the chill of the high country. Buttes and mountains surround the town, it’s the perfect place to start your wine-fueled journey. So far a largely under-discovered mecca, you’ll quickly fall in love with this gem as you explore the fantastic wine producing areas.
Sedona features rocky soil that makes the vines struggle, leading to vines that are more energetic and produce higher quality grapes. This means a more intense fruit with higher flavor concentration. In the past decade, wineries and vineyards have really sprung up in the area, and as pioneers, they’re setting the bar high.
Stop by each tasting room for samples. The seven wineries include Oak Creek Vineyards, Javelina Leap Vineyards, Alcantara Vineyards, Clear Creek Winery, Chateau Tumbleweed, D.A. Ranch and Page Springs Cellars. See how wines are crafted, and also discover some of the best hidden bistros in town.
by: Editor on 2/10/2017
Sedona is home to two seductive French restaurants, and reservations for Valentine’s Day can fill up quickly. If you’re looking to spark some romance during you stay, reserve a table at René at Tlaquepaque, an established venue for fine wines and French fare in an intimate environment. Open for lunch and dinner, and boasting an extensive wine menu, enjoy thinly sliced antelope with a trio of aioli or the sautéed brie garnished with fresh fruit to start.
Entrées include buffalo tenderloin with porcini butter, grilled to perfection. Center cut filet mignon pairs perfectly with the cabernet sauvignon. Roasted duck, seared scallops and tenderloin of antelope are also popular choices. For dessert, choose from artisanal cheese or a flambé of bananas foster and cherry jubilee.
Increase the Romance
There’s also the upscale, yet contemporary, American-French fusion destination of L’Auberge Restaurant on Oak. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, it’s where you’ll find fresh Alaskan halibut served with crab fried rice. Try the foie mousse with chocolate “bark” and cashews or the wagyu beef aged 30 days.
Dessert options include a raspberry cheesecake with dulce crisp, spiced pear frangipane and honey lavender galette. Many fall in love with the chamomile pavlova featuring meyer lemon, red berry and honeycomb.
by: Editor on 2/2/2017
Every first Friday from 5 – 8 p.m., the local Sedona Gallery Association hosts a showcase of local artists and exhibits. The receptions give visitors and local artists alike the chance to wine, dine (or enjoy appetizers in most cases) and start the weekend filled with the magic of the Sedona art scene. The Sedona Trolley offers free transportation from gallery to gallery, and the Sedona Art Gallery is proud to be a featured venue space.
Sedona has been a major player in the global art scene for decades. In 1931, the sculptors Robert and Kay Kittredge came to Sedona and fell in love with the inspirational beauty of the area. It’s also been home to Dorothea Tanning and Max Ernst, as well as Nassan Gobran and several more artists. The Sedona Arts Center was founded in 1958, with the first show featuring the Dada movement.
What to Expect
Sedona is a well-known arts hub, and creatives have gathered in the area for years to help it grow. The galleries are full of emerging artists while still boasting established works. The New York Times calls Sedona the “New West Enclave,” and it’s a hot spot for collectors.
You’ll find special speakers talking about the art scene with the red rocks as a backdrop. The member galleries of the SGA include the Sedona Art Gallery and are all committed to offering the best in quality and integrity. Come discover your inspiration on February’s First Friday.
by: Editor on 2/1/2017
The 12th annual Sedona Marathon takes place February 4th, and if you’re a runner looking for a new challenge with stunning scenery, this is one event you won’t want to miss. Prefer to cheer on the runners, or want a different length for your race? You’ll find 5k, 10k, half marathon and youth events also racing through the red rocks at this spectacular event.
February registration is $120 for the full marathon, and last-minute registrations might be possible. The Sedona Marathon is one of the most breathtaking in the U.S., and the organizers take pride in giving runners and spectators plenty of southern hospitality and a one-of-a-kind experience.
Whether you’re a regular marathoner or a first-timer, the course is designed to be full of supporters, stunning scenes and plenty of hydration and snack stations. The start and finish line is on Navoti Drive, convenient to major streets and highways. The venue opens at 7 a.m., and the marathon starts at 9, with massage tents available starting at 10.
Stick around for the full marathon awards at 1 p.m. It’s dubbed the best marathon in Arizona, one of the most beautiful races in the country, and a race that “takes runners through some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes.” All participants get swag, bragging rights and a world-class experience.
by: Editor on 1/20/2017
Every year, the Lunar New Year marks a big celebration in Sedona, and 2017 rings in the Year of the Rooster on January 28th. The Rotary Club of Sedona partners with Magical Journeys for a festival of traditional food and culture hosted by Red Chopstick Restaurant at Village of Oak Creek. The famous “New Year’s All Year Round” is committed to fundraising with the Lunar New Year and offering entertainment that highlights the Chinese culture. Proceeds benefit the club’s philanthropic efforts.
At Red Chopstick, Chef Simon Ho concocts a special eight-course dinner available only during the Lunar New Year season. It’s said that his preparation brings all who dine there luck in the new year. You’ll enjoy a tea reception, as well as lion dances and cultural lessons of the traditions before Chef Ho undertakes his elaborate noodle-making demo.
An Event Worth Celebrating
The Sedona Meditation Center also celebrates the new year with fortune telling, fortune calligraphy, an Asian food court, cultural performances, and a wish tree with a paper crane celebration. The parties continue from late-January through mid-February, giving Sedona travelers plenty of opportunities to discover the Lunar New Year happenings.
All Chinese restaurants in Sedona go all out for the New Year celebration, so make this visit to the area full of restaurant hopping!
by: Editor on 1/18/2017
Throughout Arizona, national parks are waiving entrance fees on Martin Luther King Jr. Day so you can make the most of the holiday—and see the incredible beauty of the state. The Grand Canyon is by far the most famous destination with waived fees, but don’t forget to check out numerous national monuments, parks and more on a fun-filled weekend trip from Sedona.
Only on Monday, January 17th, fees will be waived as an homage to Dr. King’s life work. Visit Walnut Canyon, Sunset Crater Volcano and more. The National Park Service is boasting over a dozen fee-free celebrations in 2017, but the kickoff weekend is in January. Find out more about fee-free days at the official website.
Traditionally a “day on, not off, of service,” there are numerous options for volunteering in the Sedona area. One-day volunteer efforts are popular and a great way for visitors to connect with their adopted city. Head over to the local Volunteer Match website to connect with an opportunity that works with your schedule, or check out the Sedona Wish List for ways to donate.
However you celebrate, from heading to a park to checking out Dr. King’s works at a local library or volunteering, make the holiday weekend count.